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Posted inArts & Culture

Hod O’Brien

Virtually every pianist of the last 50 years has been influenced in some way by Bud Powell–though relatively few of Powell’s contemporaries and only a handful of those that followed managed the balance of intensity and control that set his early recordings on fire. In fact, by the late 50s, when Hod O’Brien headed down […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Tribute to His Ego?

To whom it may concern: After reading Peter Margasak’s Post No Bills column (January 17) concerning Russ Forster, we feel that there are some factual errors in the piece concerning our film …An Incredible Simulation that should be cleared up. The article states, “Tributary started in 1996 as a collaboration with [Dan] Sutherland, Jeff Economy, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Big Kids Comedy Hour

Big Kids Comedy Hour, Bucky’s Planet Productions, at Frankie J’s MethaDome Theatre. It’s a surprise to see that an old-fashioned comedy act–a ventriloquist and his dummy–can still entertain audiences. But with a whole lot of attitude and energy, the stars of the erratic Big Kids Comedy Hour, directed by Steve Wright, bring new life to […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Dead Prez

Political hip-hop has grown scarce over the past decade, as so many MCs settle for simplistic worldviews like “I’m rich, fuck me” or “These are the end times and I am in-saaaane.” Brooklyn’s Dead Prez have been a notable exception, particularly on their fine 2000 album, Let’s Get Free (Loud). Sticman (Clayton Gavin) and M-1 […]

Posted inArts & Culture

That Championship Season

That Championship Season, Red Hen Productions. Jason Miller’s play, about a group of former athletes who peaked in high school and decades later are suffering the disappointments of middle age, opened on Broadway in 1972 and ran for more than a year and a half–and won a Pulitzer. In retrospect it’s hard to see why. […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Lisa and the Devil

The Film Center’s Mario Bava retrospective offers no better example of the Italian director’s extravagant style and love of the fantastic than this dreamy 1972 horror movie about an American tourist in Spain (Elke Sommer) who, after seeing a fresco depicting the devil as a bald, hook-nosed creature, comes face-to-face with its incarnation (Telly Savalas, […]

Posted inArts & Culture

You Are There

Daniel Bodner at Roy Boyd, through February 18 Oli Watt: Actual Size at Anchor Graphics, through February 22 Daniel Bodner’s paintings capture “the unbridgeable gap between people,” critic Wim van der Beek wrote in 1994. But Jürgen Kisters saw a “story of love, of tenderness” in a 1999 show while the Tribune’s Alan Artner found […]

Posted inFilm

Straight Ahead, on the Left

Power and Terror: Noam Chomsky in Our Times *** (A must-see) Directed by John Junkerman. As a work of cinema, John Junkerman’s documentary about Noam Chomsky doesn’t set the world on fire. The film is a prosaic compilation of interview footage of the linguist and political analyst in his office at MIT intercut with footage […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Whisper to a Scream

Bourbon at the Border Victory Gardens Theater Pearl Cleage’s Bourbon at the Border, now receiving its Chicago premiere in a nearly flawless production at Victory Gardens, is a well-constructed play with sympathetic and believable characters, fluent dialogue, a good balance of humor and pathos, and exceptional use of foreshadowing. The mildly bawdy comedy of the […]

Posted inColumns & Opinion

Savage Love

I have sex toys that I’ve only used once or twice. I can’t return them, but I can’t bring myself to throw them away. Is there a secondhand market? –Waste Not, Want Orgasm “Sadly, there is no official sex-toy exchange,” says Dr. Carol Queen, staff sexologist at Good Vibrations in San Francisco. “Many people wouldn’t […]

Posted inArts & Culture

Sharon Carlson

Operatic comedienne Sharon Carlson returns to the local cabaret scene this week after an absence of some 20 years. Long one of Chicago’s most reliable character actors (not to mention occasional motivational speaker, WTTW pledge-drive pitchwoman, and singing-telegram deliveryperson), Carlson is known for starring roles in such shows as Neil Simon’s drama Lost in Yonkers […]